Friday, 13 January 2012

Slow start for 20 mph speed limits in Brighton and Hove's residential areas

Limits to augment 20 mph "zones"
A 20 mph speed limit around Stanford schools in Brighton and Hove will start in January. The Green Party won leadership of the council in May 2011 local elections, with a manifesto that promised to "press for a 20mph limit" for residential areas in the city.

Councillor Ian Davey, the city council's Cabinet Member for Transport and Public Realm, said: "This is a first step and we will be looking closely at how this pilot scheme works to shape future proposals - we hope to work with local people on a roll-out of 20mph limits in other communities across the city."

A council press release on 11 January 2012 said: "Speed limits will be cut to 20mph around Stanford Infant and Junior Schools and surrounding residential streets in Brighton this month, following concerns raised by local people and a review of speed limits by Brighton & Hove City Council.

"The pilot scheme will take effect on January 18 and cover fifteen roads around the schools where the speed limit is currently 30 mph.

"In addition, speed limits will be reduced from 40 to 30 mph by Brighton & Hove City Council in three other locations - on Lewes Road, from Natal road to Moulsecoomb Way; Falmer Road, from Brownleaf Road, Woodingdean to Rottingdean;and Old Shoreham Road, from Hove Cemetery to Locks Hill, Portslade.

Proposals for a second 20mph pilot scheme, in Portslade old village, will be considered at the city council's Environment, Transport and Sustainability Cabinet Member meeting on January 24.

Councillor Ian Davey said: "We've listened to local people who are concerned about road safety in the Stanford area, and carried out a review of speed limits which has identified the roads around Stanford schools and local residential streets as suitable for a pilot 20 mph scheme.

Consultation was carried out with the schools in the autumn about the Stanford scheme and there were no objections when traffic orders, giving details of the proposed changes, were advertised.

Madeleine Denyer, head teacher at Stanford Infant School, said: "The safety and well-being of all children is of paramount importance. The 20mph pilot scheme can only benefit the whole community. It should help allow our children to walk, scooter or cycle to school safely, help decrease traffic congestion around our schools and benefit the environment."

Giovanni Franceschi, headteacher at Stanford Junior School, said: "We welcome the new 20mph limit. We have had some near misses around the school and teachers, parents and pupils have all been concerned about safety."

A final decision on the Portslade scheme, which covers the area around Peter Gladwin Primary, St Nicholas C Of E Junior, Portslade Infants and Hillside Special School, will be made by Cllr Davey at the meeting on January 24 after two objections were received when the traffic order for that scheme was advertised.

The roads included in the 20mph scheme around Stanford Schools are Highcroft Villas, Port Hall Avenue, Port Hall Place, Port Hall Street, Port Hall Road, Stanford Road, Coventry Street, Exeter Street, Stafford Road, Chatsworth Road, Buxton Road, Lancaster Road, Upper Hamilton Road, Hamilton Road and Brigden Street.

There are already a number of "20mph zones" in Brighton & Hove, many in the vicinity of schools. Others include North Street, Western Road, the Hanover area and Bevendean.

However, the pilot scheme in the Stanford area will be the city's first 20mph speed limit area. (Zones differ from speed limit areas because zones also include traffic calming measures in addition to a 20mph limit).

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